Exclusive: Rangers celebrate 94 but where was the Cup

Last night the New York Rangers celebrated the 25th Anniversary of the 1994 Championship season. The entire team was there except for Brian Noonan who had a prior commitment.

As each player was announced and made their walk through a sea of 94 specially selected fans the anticipation grew. Everyone knew that “The Captain”, Mark Messier was going to be the last name called, what many expected is that he would step on the red carpet with the Stanley Cup raised high overhead one last time.

The moment arrived and Messier was announced to a roaring Madison Square Garden crowd but Lord Stanley’s prize was no where to be found. Let’s be clear, Cup or no Cup the night was amazing and the truth is the celebration was about the team not the trophy. As Messier said last night the word team isn’t good enough to describe that group because they were a “family”.

Still it would have been nice to have the Cup in the house but it wasn’t for a lack of trying either. I reached out to the Rangers Senior VP of Public Relations and Player Recruitment, John Rosasco for some insight.

“The original date for the ceremony was Sunday night,” Rosasco began to explain. “When NBC took Sunday and wouldn’t relent when we asked, we were forced to move the game to last night.” He continued to note that had NBC broadcasted the game they wouldn’t have been able to cover it the way MSG Networks did. Needless to say, MSG Networks broadcast of the ceremony was integral to making fans at home feel all the nostalgia and energy those in the building were experiencing. So from a fan perspective this was a great decision by the organization.

The other issue in trying to get the Cup in the building last night was the trophy itself had prior commitments. “Since today is hockey day in Canada, there was no way to get it to where it needed to be so we had to move on without it unfortunately.” Rosasco continued, “It certainly would’ve been nice to have but as Mark (Messier) said last night – it was most important for us to have our “family” all together.”

Today the Stanley Cup is on display for our brothers to the North to enjoy. While it would have been nice to have at The Garden last night it didn’t take away an iota from the magical celebration.

Thank you to John Rosasco for taking the time to answer my question and for you great Rangers fans.

Anthony Scultore has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL since 2014. His work also appears at... More about Anthony Scultore

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